VIDEO ROOM

Video Room has been serving the Piedmont Avenue neighborhood since 1988. We carry a large selection of movies on DVD and have an ever growing Blu-ray library. We specialize in hard-to-find and obscure cult classics, TV shows, foreign cinema, and film noir, in addition to the latest new releases. Check out our large Directors section and offbeat categories that make us unique. Kids and dogs are welcome. Senior discounts available. We do same day reservations. Free parking.

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Sunday-Thurday, 12pm-8pm
Friday-Saturday, 12pm-9pm


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info @ videoroomoakland.com

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Tuesday, June 1, 2010

New Releases - June 1, 2010

Alice in Wonderland [2010] - The master of weird fun Tim Burton puts his ultra-offbeat spin on Lewis Carroll's classic children's book in this colorful megahit [it's the highest grossing film of 2010 so far at $339 million+] that may either frighten the bejeeezuz out of or delight the little ones in your family depending on their maturity and taste. In any case, parents may want to preview it first if the kids haven't seen it. While the film follows the basic framework of the story, as with other Burton films like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Planet of the Apes, you can expect a lot of surprises, especially since CGI has evolved so quickly. Newcomer Mia Wasikowska plays the 19 year old Alice, who returns to Wonderland to see how her odd friends are doing. Johnny Depp, who has worked with Burton several times now, does his usual eye-catching job as the nervous Mad Hatter, but Helena Bonham Carter steals the film as the over-the-top Queen of Hearts and watch for a possible Best Supporting Actress nom next year. The rest of the great cast includes Anne Hathaway, Crispin Glover, Matt Lucas, and the voices of Stephen Fry and Alan Rickman. With featurettes. 2010. 16x9 Widescreen. 109 minutes. PG.

All My Friends Are Funeral Singers - In this offbeat drama fantasy chiller, Angela Bettis plays a woman who tells fortunes with the help of some seemingly friendly ghosts that live with her. Unfortunately, a mysterious light appears, and the ghosts discover that they are actually prisoners in the home, causing them to rebel. Can Bettis convince them they are her family or will they drive her crazy first? Also starring Emily Candini, Reid Coker, Megan Hovde-Wilkins, Karol Kent, George McAuliffe, Alan Scalpone, Molly Wade, and Wesley Walker. With featurettes, interviews and music video. Directed by Tim Rutili. 2009. 16x9 Widescreen. 83 minutes. Unrated.

By Brakhage: Anthology Volume 2 - 30 more films from the indie cult filmmaker. All are shot on 16mm, 8mm and Super 8. 3 separate rentals. 1955-2003. Full screen.

Drop Dead Diva: Season 1 - Brooke Elliott makes an impressive starring debut in this hour long dramedy series on Lifetime. She plays a young plus-size attorney, who is actually embodied by the spirit of a beautiful but vapid dead model. Now, she has to see if see can make it through her new life without her looks. Co-starring Margaret Cho. The incredible guests include Rosie O'Donnell, Elliott Gould, Tim Gunn, Kathy Najimy, Teri Polo, Marla Sokoloff, Gregory Harrison, Paula Abdul, Liza Minnelli, Nia Vardalos, Faith Prince, Shirley Knight, Brooke Burns, Paula Abdul and Devon Gummersall. With deleted scenes, Dreamisodes, and featurettes. 12 epis spread across 3 DVDs. 2 separate rentals. 2009. 16x9 Widescreen. Unrated.

Easier with Practice - Brian Geraghty (The Hurt Locker) stars as a writer on a road trip to promote his book. He accidentally receives a phone sex call in his motel room and becomes obsessed with the caller in this acclaimed indie drama. With commentary and featurettes. Directed by Kyle Patrick Alovarez. 2009. 16x9 Widescreen. 100 minutes. Unrated.

Eastwood Factor, The - Esteemed film critic Richard Schickel directed this insightful documentary that explores the legendary career of multi-hyphenate Clint Eastwood. Featuring revealing interviews with Clint in a rare look at the shy icon. 88 minutes. Unrated.

Foyle's War: Season 7 [aka Set 6] - After WWII, Detective Chief Inspector Foyle (brilliantly played by Michael Kitchen) has to put aside his retirement when more unusual crimes plague the seaside town of Hastings. Please note that this U.S. Acorn Media release of this series is called Set 6, but in Britain, it is actually Season 7. Anthony Howell and Honeysuckle Weeks return in their co-starring roles. The Russian House has Foyle dealing with a Russian POW's escape and a former colleague who may be involved in a murder. In Killing Time is about the racial tension caused when African-American wait to return home in Hastings, threatening to create a major incident. The Hide has Foyle puzzled why a British POW refuses to defend himself against charges of treason, and the mysterioud death of young woman also keeps things busy. Currently, thsi is supposed to be the end of the series, but never say never. 3 separate rentals. 2010. 16x9 Widescreen. 300 minutes. Unrated.

Jailhouse Rock: Deluxe Edition - This was Elvis Presley's 3rd film and is still considered one of his best if not the best. He plays a young man who is sent to prison for manslaughter when he defends a woman from an attacker. While in prison, he hones his singing and guitar skills, and when he gets out, he becomes a big rock star. However, fame goes to his head until his best friend/ex-cellmate and his girlfriend bring him back down to earth. Elvis rocks the screen with some great songs, including the title tune, "Baby, I Don't Care," and "Treat Me Nice." Judy Tyler is appealing as the King's beautiful and more sensible girlfriend. Sadly, she and her husband died in a tragic car accident a few days after filming finished. Mickey Shaughnessy also is impressive as Elvis' cellmate singing pal. Co-starring Dean Jones and Jennifer Holden. Black and white. With commentary and featurette. 1957. 16x9 Widescreen. 96 minutes. Unrated.

Life [BBC 2009 miniseries] - David Attenborough narrates this 10 part documentary about the earth's most fascinating creatures. EDITORIAL NOTE AND AN OPEN LETTER TO WARNER BROTHERS AND BBC VIDEO: Customers note that we are only carrying the UK version of this miniseries. BBC Video, for some reason-probably commercial, decided to create a "United States version" to be broadcast on the Discovery Channel and narrated by TV icon Oprah Winfrey instead of Attenborough. This seemingly innocuous decision created a firestorm on the net, with many nasty netwits [my nickname for internet nitwits of which there are far too many] who viciously trashed Winfrey and her version without even having heard the Attenborough version. Yes, BBC did change some but very little of her narration to be a little cuter and suit her personality, but she did not write the text and most of it is the same as the original. Well, all those Oprah bashers turned out to be idiots because the miniseries earned Discovery their highest ratings in history, and BBC is laughing all the way to the bank, so thanks for that publicity boost, you stupid critics! Now, Warner Brothers, which distributes BBC Video in the US, has added insult to injury by taking the greedy route and releasing two separate versions: the original BBC version and the U.S. version. I'm all for free enterprise, but I really think they are gouging the customer. Instead of releasing two expensive versions, they could have put both versions in one set (with both audio tracks on all episodes so viewers could have a choice) by adding a few more discs and a few more $ to the set. This is especially true of the Blu-rays, which are also separate sets and could have easily fit on one set. Warner Brothers and BBC, if you are reading this: do us a favor next time: either do one version only in the first place or put both versions in one set and don't be so greedy!!! signed off by Manager Steven Y. Mori. 4 separate DVD rentals. 2009. 16x9 Widescreen. 586 minutes. Unrated.

Objectified - Gary Hustwit, the director of Helvetica, returns with this fascinating documentary about everyday objects that we see everyday and who invented them and how. With extra interviews. 2009. 16x9 Widescreen. 75 minutes. Unrated.

Red Baron, The - Matthias Schweighofer stars as Baron Manfred von Richtofen, the German ace pilot who became famous for his red airplane and for shooting down a record number of enemy aircraft during WWI. This nicely mounted docudrama goes deeper than previous bios and reveals his displeasure with how the German government exploits him, and the respect he earns from both colleauges and enemies. Also starring Til Schweiger, Lena Headey and Joseph Fiennes. Directed by Nikolai Mullerschoen. 2008. 16x9 Widescreen. 106 minutes. PG-13.

Sharpe's Peril - Sean Bean returns as the heroic Sharpe as he guards a beautiful princess while traveling a dangerous route in India that is travelled by bandits and other hostiles. Daragh O'Malley, Raza Jaffrey, Velibor Topic, and Beatrice Rosen co-star. With featurette and stills. Directed by Tom Clegg. 2008. 16x9 Widescreen. 138 minutes. Unrated.

Small Town Saturday Night - Chris Pine [Star Trek 2009] stars as an aspiring singer who must decide between staying with his sweetheart and following his dreams in this moving drama. Starring Bre Blair, Shawn Christian, John Hawkes, Scott Mochael Campbell, and Adam Hendershott. Directed by Ryan Craig. 2010. 16x9 Widescreen. 94 minutes. R.

Stranger, The [2009] - Wrestling star Steve Austin plays an amnesiac who is being hunted by both the FBI and the Russian mob, so he has to find out who he is and why he knows how to beat the crap out of people so easily before he gets killed. Obviously a Bourne again knockoff but probably a fun one. Co-starring Adam Beach and Erica Cerra. Directed by Rob Lieberman. 2009. 16x9 Widescreen. 90 minutes. R.

Sun, The - This acclaimed Russian, Italian, Swiss, French co-production war drama stars Issei Ogata as Emperor Hirohito and recreates the events that surround his decision to uphold a cease fire after the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. Robert Dawson, Kaori Momoi, Shiro Sano, Taijiro Tamura, and Georgy Pitskhelauri star. In Japanese with English subtitles. With stills. 2005. 16x9 Widescreen. 110 minutes. Unrated.

Voyage Round My Father, A - Laurence Olivier gives a moving performance as a respected and aging barrister who refuses to acknowledge that he is going blind. Alan Bates also is superb as his son as he tries to come to terms with their loving but difficult relationship. Co-starring Jane Asher and Elizabeth Sellars. Directed by Alvin Rakoff. 1982. Full Screen. Unrated.

Wild Things: Foursome - This 3rd sequel in the Wild Things franchise brings more of the erotic double dealing and half naked babes that we've come to expect, and you won't be disappointed if you like the others. But what is John Schneider doing in this? Starring Jillian Murray, Marnette Patterson. and Ashley Parker Angel. Directed by Andy Hurst. 2010. 16x9 Widescreen. Unrated.

Wolfman, The [2010] - Judging from most people's reactions, you may end up either loving or hating this moody and fun reboot of the classic Universal horror icon. Benecio Del Toro, aided by terrific makeup and CGI FX, does an effective job of playing the troubled man turned wolf, and the first rate cast also includes Anthony Hopkins, Emily Blunt and Hugo Weaving. With deleted scenes. Directed by Joe Johnston. 2010. 16x9 Widescreen. 119 minutes. Unrated.

Blu-rays:

Alice in Wonderland [2010] - With same extras as the DVD and includes the regular DVD.

Wolfman, The [2010] - With deleted scenes and bonus featurette. This also includes the original Lon Chaney Jr. classic The Wolf Man.



descriptions written by manager Steven Y. Mori

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